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MLB Rumors

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Angels to recall Wade LeBlanc, who could join rotation
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

The Angels recalled pitcher Wade LeBlanc from Triple-A Salt Lake Thursday, to replace Garrett Richards (knee) on the active roster.

LeBlanc will be available out of the bullpen beginning Thursday, but the Orange County Register reports he is in line to start in Richards' place Monday against the Marlins. LeBlanc appeared in one game earlier this season for the Angels, allowing four runs over six innings of relief. 

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Chad Qualls likely unavailable Thursday as well
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

Astros pitcher Chad Qualls told MLB.com Thursday he does not expect to be available for that day's game against the Yankees, due to tightness in his lower back.

Qualls has not pitched since Tuesday, but does not think  the injury will require a disabled list trip. 

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Yohan Pino set to start in Saturday's doubleheader
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

The Twins will recall pitcher Yohan Pino for Saturday's doubleheader against the Tigers, manager Ron Gardnehire told MLB.com Thursday.

Pino will start the first game of the doubleheader, his first start since he was sent down last week. Pino's stay with the team will not last long, as he will be called up and sent down as the team's 26th man for the doubleheader. 

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David Murphy begins physical activities
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

Indians outfielder David Murphy began core exercises Thursday, manager Terry Francona told reporters.

Murphy began his exercises Thursday, though it sounds as if he is limited at this point. Murphy is expected to be out until at least mid-September due to a strained right oblique. 

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Steven Souza starting rehab at Class A Hagerstown
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

Nationals outfielder Steven Souza will begin his rehab assignment Thursday at Class A Hagerstown Thursday, as he continues his recovery from a shoulder injury.

According to the Washington Post, Souza is expected to play at Hagerstown before moving to Class A Potomac for a few more games. It is not clear when he will be considered a candidate to return to the majors.  

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Justin Verlander appears set for Saturday start after bullpen
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander seems likely to make his scheduled start Saturday against the Twins, after getting through a bullpen session Thursday.

Verlander, who missed his last turn in the rotation with shoulder soreness, got through a 35-pitch session without issue. According to MLive.com, he walked into manager Brad Ausmus's office after the session to deliver a high five, undoubtedly a good sign.

Verlander has not pitched since lasting just one inning in his Aug. 9 start against Pittsburgh. 

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Miguel Cabrera serving as DH with ankle issue
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera was serving as the designated hitter for Thursday's game against the Rays after aggravating an ankle injury Wednesday, manager Brad Ausmus told reporters.

Cabrera has served as the DH in 13 of his 123 games this season. Ausmus does not think this injury is much of a concern moving forward. 

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Masahiro Tanaka set for live BP Saturday
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka will take another step forward this weekend, as he is set to face hitters in a live batting practice session Saturday, manager Joe Girardi announced.

Tanaka, who is working his way back from a partially torn UCL, will face hitters for the first time since suffering the injury. He has been working in bullpen sessions in recent weeks as part of his rehab, and the next step will likely be determined after he gets through Saturday's session.

Tanaka has been out since early July due to the injury, but remains hopeful he will be able to return to action this season.  

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Carlos Beltran sidelined again Thursday
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

Yankees outfielder Carlos Beltran is out of the lineup for the second day in a row Thursday against the Astros, as he continues to deal with an elbow injury.

Beltran was examined Wednesday, but the results of that are not yet known. He had a cortison injection in the elbow, his third of the season, and manager Joe Girardi told reporters Thursday he expects to know if Beltran will be available moving forward by Saturday. 

The elbow began bothering him again in recent days, possibly as a result of his return to the outfield last week. He has just one hit in his last 28 at-bats.  

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Following bullpen struggles, Chase Whitley sent down
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com

The Yankees optioned pitcher Chase Whitley to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Thursday, to clear a roster spot for a callup.

Whitley has spent the last month pitching out of the Yankees bullpen, but has struggled in that role. He has allowed 10 runs over his last 7 1/3 innings, raising his season ERA to 5.43 overall.  

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